New Band Members Receive Blockheads

Navigate Left
Navigate Right
  • Emma Schultz ’21 reaches the end of a tunnel of upperclassmen band members.

  • Caelin Bird’ 18 presents April Gao ’20 with her Blockhead.

  • Audrey Temple ’21 runs through a tunnel of upperclassmen to receive her Blockhead.

  • Pablo Lomeli ’21 high fives upperclassmen as he runs to receive his Blockhead.

  • Matthew Wyzykowski ’18 and Isabel Grudowski ’19 wait to greet their band sibling with his blockhead and a stuffed turtle.

Navigate Left
Navigate Right

Band, like many organizations, has its own time tested traditions. From getting through band camp together to kidnapping new members in the middle of the night, traditions keep students feeling like a part of something bigger. The Blockhead ceremony is no different.

The Blockhead ceremony consists of new band members running down a tunnel formed by returning students. At the end of the tunnel, the freshmen are awarded a small gift of candy and their Blockhead, a marching nutcracker displayed by students in their front yard to symbolize their place in band. At the ceremony, freshmen are also introduced to their band big sibling whose job is to help them adjust to life in band.

“It’s always really great to see the freshman get their Blockheads [and] their buddies because having bigger band siblings is a really great way to connect with the whole section and have one person who’s kind of like your mentor,” Katie Van Gulick ‘18 said.

For many students, having a band buddy is a great way to get to know the upperclassmen and help the freshmen find their own place within the sections.

“She and I do spend a lot of time together whether it be doing guard projects or just hanging out,” Sophia Davis ‘20 said. “We’ve gotten to know each other so much better since we became guard siblings and that truly makes me very happy.”

As shown by its tried and true traditions, band is a closely knit family with celebrations like the Blockhead ceremony promoting friendships between the grade levels.

“Running down the tunnel was really surreal,” Davis said. “There were all these people that I’d talked to maybe once or twice who were all cheering for me and welcoming me to the band family. It just made me feel like I was with all these people who’ll be my friends for years to come.”